Uhde Sentenced To 25 Years In Prison For Emmet County Murder

Estherville, Iowa — One of the defendants who was accused of the murder of an Estherville man whose body was found along an Emmet County road last year has been sentenced.

A criminal complaint says that in the fall of 2021, 20-year-old David McDowell was reportedly lured to an apartment by 19-year-old Connor Uhde and 18-year-old CeJay Van Der Wilt before he was shot to death early the next morning along a roadway about five miles outside of Estherville. His body was discovered several hours later by a passing motorist.

Uhde entered an Alford plea. A defendant entering an Alford plea doesn’t plead guilty to the charges, but admits that the prosecution has sufficient evidence to obtain a conviction. As part of a plea agreement, Uhde’s charges were changed to attempted murder and third-degree kidnapping. He had originally been charged with murder in the first degree. He also agreed to testify against Van Der Wilt.

The attempted murder charge is a class B felony, and Uhde will serve 25 years in prison on that charge. The kidnapping charge is a class C felony and as such carries, a 10-year penalty, but the sentences are to run concurrently, or at the same time.

Meanwhile, Van Der Wilt had also originally been charged with first-degree murder, but was convicted of involuntary manslaughter. That offense is a class D felony. As such, he could face five years in prison for the offense when he’s sentenced on December 6th.

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